Hire

Get in touch

Prefer using email? Hit me up at [email protected]

Create Harmonious Journeys

Do you design inclusively? Why is it important? The following information has been collated from various online resources and summarised on this page for your consumption.

In today’s fast-paced digital landscape, ensuring that everyone can access and use online services is more crucial than ever. Inclusive design focuses on creating digital content and tools that everyone can use, is essential in an increasingly connected Australia.

Why does Inclusive Design matter

Inclusive design is about being fair and ensuring everyone can benefit from digital content, regardless of their abilities. With the recent emphasis on remote work, online education and digital services due to the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring accessibility is more crucial than ever. The data suggests there are around 4.4 million Australians who live with a disability and inclusive design ensures they can easily interact with technology and get the value they need from it.

Legally, Australia has strong anti-discrimination laws, including the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) 1992, which requires organisations to make reasonable adjustments for accessibility. With the rise in the usage of digital services, being inclusive is not just a legal requirement but a necessity for avoiding legal issues and fostering a more welcoming online environment.

Business Benefits

Accessible websites and digital tools reach a broader audience, including people with disabilities, older adults, and those with temporary impairments. As businesses shift more operations online, accessibility can lead to more user engagement, customer loyalty, and a larger market reach. Companies that invest in inclusive design are tapping into a significant and often overlooked market.

Improved Usability

Inclusive design often leads to better usability overall. When accessibility is intended, digital products become more intuitive and easier for everyone to use. It can help to drive innovation as designers explore creative solutions to make their products as user-friendly as possible.

Human Centred Design for Diverse Audiences

Another crucial part of inclusive design is understanding the diverse needs of your audience. This means considering various disabilities, such as visual, auditory, cognitive, and motor impairments. Conducting user research and engaging directly with people who have disabilities can provide valuable insights that help shape more inclusive products.

Empathy in Design

At its core, empathy is at the heart of human centred design. Put yourself in the shoes of users with different abilities, you will better understand their challenges and develop creations that address their needs. You might consider involving using screen readers, voice commands or alternative navigation methods in your designs. The following information, published by the UK Government, provides some great insight into a variety of user profiles and understanding of disabilities and impairments. Check it out!

Collaboration and Feedback

Speaking with diverse user groups during the design and testing phases elicits feedback to identify accessibility issues that might not be apparent to those without disabilities. Iterative testing and incorporating feedback ensure that the final product is truly inclusive.

Paving the way forward

How do Australian businesses, government agencies and non-profit organisations embrace the benefits of inclusive design and take action?

Education and Training

Investing in education and training for designers, developers and content creators on accessibility standards and best practices is key. This includes understanding guidelines like the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) and how to apply them.

User Involvement

Proactively engage with users who have disabilities throughout the design process ensuring that digital products meet real-world needs. This user centred approach provides valuable insights for more effective and empathetic design.

Continuous improvement

Accessibility is not just a quick-fix or an afterthought before a product is launched. It is essential to maintain and improve accessibility over time through regular audits, user feedback and updates.

Embracing inclusive design

This is especially important now, as digital services become more integrated into our daily lives. It is not just about following the law and a checklist of standards, it makes good business sense and encourages innovation. Committing to accessibility ensures that all people can engage with, contribute to and benefit from the digital world.

Resources

My findings were obtained from some of the following resources.